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The Naturopathic Chef: Gluten Free Pizza Crust

This is the pizza crust I developed for my gluten free corporate lunch and learns. I needed a crust that was fast and easy to handle. GF recipes are often unstable and difficult for a novice GF baker to execute. The ground flax seeds and chia slurry give this crust structure and stability, while maintaining a light, airy crispness. It also has the much desired “chew factor” that great Napolotano-style pizza has. Your family will say, “pi’u la pizza per favore!” “More pizza, please!”

Crust

  • 1-1 1/2  Cup GF Beer, room temp (Just enough liquid to bring the dough together)
  • 1 tsp Dry Yeast
  • 3 cups GF all purpose flour
  • 1 Tbls Ground Flax seeds
  • 2 tsps Salt
  • 2 1/2 tsps Baking Powder
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbls Chia Seeds, bloomed in 1/2 cup Water

Prepare two rimmed cookie sheets with parchment lightly sprayed with olive oil

In a small mixing bowl, pour 1 cup of beer in and sprinkle yeast over beer. Set aside. When using a stand mixer, the paddle will give the best results; or use a wooden spoon to mix by hand. Stir flour, flax seeds, salt, and baking powder together. With mixer running, slowly stream in beer/yeast mixture. Add olive oil and chia slurry. All GF dough tends to be sticky. Please, do not over mix, this leads to a tough crust. Lightly coat a large mixing bowl with olive oil. Place dough in a bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rest in a warm place for 75-90 minutes. When dough is puffed (it doesn’t rise the same way traditional crust does,) divide in half. Place each piece of dough on the prepared cookie sheets. Brush a small amount of olive oil over the top of each. Cover with plastic wrap and press dough into desired thickness and shape. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and slide parbaked crusts to a wire cooling rack. From here, crusts can hold at room temperature up to four hours, or when completely cooled, wrap in plastic and then in foil. Freeze up to one month. Remove frozen crusts and top with sauce and other toppings. Bake at 500 degrees for 10-12 minutes using a preheated pizza stone or cookie sheet.

Fresh crust on the day of: One hour before baking, place pizza stone in middle of oven. Heat oven and stone to 500 degrees. Top parbaked crust with sauce and toppings. Slide pizza onto heated stone. Bake as directed above, or until cheese is golden and bubbly.

Sauce

  • 1 28 oz can San Marzano Tomatoes
  • 2 Tbls Tomato Paste
  • 1 Tbls Basil
  • 1 Tbls Oregano
  • 1 Tbls Thyme
  • 3/4 tsp Red Chili Flakes (Optional, but very traditional)
  • 2 tsps Balsamic Vinegar
  • *This sauce is very herbaceous at this measurement. Decrease to 2 tsps if you don’t want the herbal flavor at the front of the palate

Mix all ingredients in a large saucepan, except vinegar. Cook over medium heat mashing and stirring the tomatoes as the sauce reduces. Cook 30-40 minutes or until moisture is gone and sauce is very thick. Remove from heat and stir in vinegar. Set aside until ready to assemble and bake your masterpiece!

Phyto Facts

Celiacs vs. Coeliac

Most of us have heard of Celiac disease by now with the marked increase in the mainstream population. Most of us, however, have never heard of Coeliac Disease. Coeliac is derived from the Greek word, “koiliakos,” meaning, “to suffer in the bowels.” Grains and other fibrous foods pass through the stomach and upper intestines in their crude form. This causes great pain, acid reflux, and indigestion in general. The inflammation caused from this poor digestion is painful along with the host of other side effects that go along with being Coeliac. But, it is not fatal like Celiac can be. It all comes down to the inability to break down gluten and other plant proteins. Gluten is the general name for the proteins found in grains. The three grains that are highest in gluten are Wheat, Barley and Rye. Other grains such as Kamut, Duram, Spelt, and Farina are cousins of wheat, and can cause irritation and inflammation, particularly in those with Celiac disease. The mass production of wheat has genetic consequences: there is mounting evidence that the genetic modification of our grains is leading to a marked increase in inflammation of the digestive tract and brain, as seen in Autism. Clinical depression, Parkinson’s, ALS, Alzheimer’s/Dementia and the slow output of Leptin (the fat burning hormone) are all being connected to GMO grain in the latest research.

Apigenin

The herbs we’re using are high in Apigenin. I’ve written about the research concerning its powerful effect on ovarian cancer. Apigenin also calms anxiety and is showing promise as a protective agent for strengthening the brain in a fetus. There are many case studies linking a chronically agitated nervous system to clinical depression later in life. Omega-3s and Apigenin are critical to avoiding this in adults and children. Besides our leafy herbs; flowers are very high in this phytonutrient. Specifically, Chamomile tea. Mommies, please check with your OB/GYN to confirm a nightly cup of Chamomile fits with your prescribed regimen. Here’s to babies that sleep through the night!

Lycopene

Lycopene, in the sauce, can slow aging. It is one of the best internal beauty secrets we have. Lycopene also reduces Sun damage by as much as 40%, keeps our hearts healthy and strong, and will someday be the cure for Prostate cancer. Sloan-Kettering is a leader in this technology. It truly is Delicious Medicine.


Affectionately referred to as The Walking Encyclopedia of Human Wellness, Fitness Coach, Strength Competitor and Powerlifting pioneer, Tina “The Medicine Chef” Martini is an internationally recognized Naturopathic Chef and star of the cooking show, Tina’s Ageless Kitchen. Tina’s cooking and lifestyle show has reached millions of food and fitness lovers all over the globe. Over the last 30 years, Tina has assisted celebrities, gold-medal athletes and over-scheduled executives naturally achieve radiant health using The Pyramid of Power: balancing Healthy Nutrition and the healing power of food, with Active Fitness and Body Alignment techniques. Working with those who have late-stage cancer, advanced diabetes, cardiovascular and other illnesses, Tina’s clients are astounded at the ease and speed with which they are able to restore their radiant health. Tina believes that maintaining balance in our diet, physical activity, and in our work and spiritual life is the key to our good health, happiness and overall well being. Visit her website, themedicinechef.com

MFN Contributing Author